Ever since Yankees MVP Aaron Judge tossed himself onto the hard, caked dirt in Minnesota (on his birthday!), he's seemingly been itching to return to the action.
He didn't leave that game, despite publicly flexing his pained hand, and spoke in its aftermath about how sometimes you're hurt, sometimes you're not, and he had to play. After a few tough innings in Texas, he was finally pulled from the next series' opener, and was placed on the IL shortly thereafter.
Judge's issues were always purported to be mild, though, and all signs pointed toward his activation on Tuesday against the A's when the window of his injured list stint was set to expire.
The outfielder reportedly hasn't felt any pain in the hip for five days, per Laura Albanese of Newsday, and will now rejoin his teammates in the lineup as anticipated. In exchange for Judge, the Yankees will go the safe route and place Oswald Peraza on the IL, retroactive to several days ago, after the top infield prospect turned his ankle in the wild extra-inning finale of last week's home series against the Cleveland Guardians.
Yankees demote Nick Ramirez, add Greg Weissert and Aaron Judge, place Oswald Peraza on IL
Yes, they could've sent yesterday's home run hero Aaron Hicks down. They could've demoted Jake Bauers. They could've risked losing Willie Calhoun forever. They could've even used an option on Oswaldo Cabrera!
This was always the easiest option, though. After all, why else was a hobbled Peraza still on the active roster? He wasn't being used, except as a pawn.
Additionally, Nick Ramirez, the left-hander who finished out Monday's win, was demoted after the game, with reliever Greg Weissert promoted again in his place. Weissert's absurd breaking stuff imbues him with higher upside, and the Yankees required a fresh arm, especially after wearing thin this weekend in Tampa. Weissert's most recent appearance was 1.1 innings on Sunday.
The Yankees' offense has woken up somewhat these past few games, with Harrison Bader powering two comebacks in two days (one successful) to begin the Rays series, followed by back-to-back seven-run showings. Hopefully, Judge's status further empowers this slapdash crew.